Thursday, June 7, 2012

Why I Participate in Author Interviews


Shine a Light on You
On Mondays, I enjoy spotlighting author interviews on this blog site. To a recent request for an interview, I received an interesting response. The author was eager to participate if I could explain how an interview would be of benefit to the author.

My initial reaction was, “Don’t all authors wish they knew in advance how a given marketing tool would be of benefit to them?” Then, stepping back, I analyzed the question from a personal viewpoint. What were my reasons for participating in author interviews, as interviewee and interviewer?

As the self-published author of a first novel, my introductory role in an interview was as interviewee. A bit of research had revealed that interviews were a good marketing tool for promoting a book. Several kindly bloggers offered or agreed to interview me, including:

Sandra “Jeanz”  http://jeanzbookreadnreview.blogspot.com/p/home.html




Faced with the question of how an interview would be of benefit to the author, I rephrased the question for myself, “How had I benefited from participating in interviews?”

  • First, I wanted to introduce people to my writing and direct them to sites where they could learn more about my novel and purchase the book. Aside from bringing the book to the attention of the interviewer’s readers, I was able to disseminate the information to people on my social media sites to introduce myself and my writing through an interview.

  • Second, I learned a lot about myself while formulating answers to the varied questions presented by interviewers. While all my thoughts weren’t put into words, it was interesting to solidify my ideas about research, writing, and marketing. Writing in a vacuum doesn’t spur an author to mine these thoughts. As a first-time published author, there is so much yet for me to learn, and I am always eager to implement new ideas, both in my writing and in marketing. Interviews fit into this learning curve.

  • Third, characters within my novel came into renewed focus. Writing a Pepper Bibeau mystery series makes it imperative for me to stay on top of my recurring personalities. For authors who write non-series books, understanding the characters in one story will build a foundation for creating characters in the next one. After the manuscript is in print and the marketing process begins, however, it is easy to become fuzzy on some of the basics. If you give interviews, you can remain sharp and maintain interest in your writing process.

  • Finally, and most important for me, I met some fantastic people: the interviewers. The interaction stimulated my desire to continue writing. It occurred to me that by interviewing authors on my blog site, I could meet any number of fantastic authors, further motivating me to move forward.

My novels feature a strong female protagonist, Pepper Bibeau. Originally, my interviews focused on independent/self-published authors whose protagonists are strong female characters. I soon extended that scope to include people who are strong females in their own right.

Why narrow the field, especially to female protagonists? It was a matter of control. I felt that a broader base would distract me from getting to know the individual authors. I like to check out an author’s work, visit social media sites on the internet, and submit reviews of books I’ve read when possible. My blog site revolves around #mystery #suspense #crimefiction. For April’s A to Z Blogging Challenge, my 26-post theme was “A World of Crime.” This covers a lot of territory, by no means excluding the male half of the world’s authors.

If you’ve participated in an author interview, how has the interview process been of benefit to you? 

5 comments:

  1. “Don’t all authors wish they knew in advance how a given marketing tool would be of benefit to them?”

    That made me smile :) I think it's like everything we do online and otherwise. We can't always measure the results, it's just a part of staying in the game.

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  2. “Don’t all authors wish they knew in advance how a given marketing tool would be of benefit to them?”

    That made me smile :) I think it's like everything we do online and otherwise. We can't always measure the results, it's just a part of staying in the game.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have taken part in them and they are a lot of fun, they spread the word about the author being interviewed, they spread the word about the books.

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  4. Karen, I agree, it isn't always possible to measure results, and staying in the game is part of the joy of writing!

    Lynda, you're right, interviews do spread the word about both the author and the book.

    Thank you for visiting today. I'll see you on your blogsites!

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  5. Hi Gail,
    Hello from India.
    Only lately have I begun to concentrate and spend time on my book-review blog (It is still a hobby, but I devote more time to it). Initially I did not interview authors, I just did book reviews. However, some books required a far greater insight and I would reach out to the author with my questions, to enable me to write the review. Thus, began my foray into actual author interviews.
    However, till date, I interview an author only after I've reader her/his book and the questions I ask are book specific.
    I do see so many similar questions in author interviews, which have nothing whatsoever to do with the book in question. True, some of these questions result in some interesting answers, but I really love it, when questions asked relate to the book and provide added insights into BOTH the book and the author.

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